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May.10, 2021: @acenewsservices

Newspaper headlines: ‘Starmer swings axe’, and ‘darling hugs of May’

The i front page 10 May 2021
The Labour reshuffle is one of the lead stories dominating Monday’s front pages. “Starmer swings axe after poll disaster” is the headline on the front of the i. Anneliese Dodds has been demoted as shadow chancellor, replaced by Rachel Reeves, and Nick Brown will leave the chief whip role. It comes after Labour lost more than 320 councillors at the polls in England last week and eight councils. The paper says the reshuffle was delayed as leader Sir Keir Starmer and his deputy Angela Rayner “haggled over her future”.

BBC News: Staff:

The Guardian says Sir Keir’s plan to demote Ms Rayner was “derailed” following a backlash from the deputy’s supporters: Ms Rayner is considered a potential future leadership challenger, the paper reports. The Guardian front page – released before Sir Keir’s reshuffle got fully under way on Sunday night – says his leadership has been “plunged into crisis”.Sir Keir was warned by the hard left that he would face a leadership challenge unless the party improved its performance, according to the Daily Telegraph. The paper says allies of his predecessor, Jeremy Corbyn, accused Sir Keir of lacking “basic political skills” and vowed to push back against his modernising plans. Khalid Mahmood, who resigned as shadow defence minister in the wake of Thursday’s elections, said the party was seen as “out of touch” and “captured by urban liberals”.

The other main story dominating the papers is the prime minister’s expected announcement that social distancing rules in England will be relaxed further from next week. “Darling hugs of May” is Metro’s front page. Boris Johnson is due to announce that hugging loved ones will be allowed from 17 May. He is also expected to say that groups of up to six can meet indoors.

The Daily Mirror opts for exactly the same headline as Metro – a play on the 1990s comedy television series: The paper says Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove confirmed the relaxation of the rules on Sunday, saying: “Intimate contact, between friends and family, we want to see restored.”The Daily Mail calls it a “huge hug for Britain”, saying the PM will “herald a return to freedom” in his speech on Monday. The paper reports that, with a third of adults now vaccinated with two doses of a coronavirus jab, the PM will announce that friends and family can hug from next Monday for the first time in a year.

England’s pubs, restaurants and cafes will also be able to let customers sit inside again.The relaxation of the rules – labelled “new freedoms” by the Daily Express – will be here to stay, the paper says, quoting the prime minister. Mr Johnson said on Sunday: “The road map remains on track. We can now look forward to unlocking cautiously but irreversibly.”

The Financial Times says that, as the threat of coronavirus eases, Mr Johnson is facing new political “danger” in Scotland. Nicola Sturgeon – newly-re-elected as Scotland’s first minister – said she would seek another independence referendum once the threat of the pandemic passes – potentially as soon as next year. It comes after the Scottish National Party secured a fourth consecutive victory at Holyrood.

Meanwhile, the PM is planning to relax rules around building new homes in a bid to solidify Tory control in the Midlands and north, according to the Times: The paper says it is the “biggest shake-up” of the planning system in more than 70 years. A planning bill will be included in the Queen’s Speech on Tuesday, the paper adds.And the Daily Star says global warming is threatening “the great British cuppa”, with climate change jeopardising plantations and possibly leaving leaves tasting “terrible”

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer’s late night reshuffle is on several of the front pages. 

“Starmer swings axe after poll disaster” is the headline for the i

It says the reshuffle was delayed while Sir Keir and Labour’s deputy leader, Angela Rayner, haggled over her future. 

The Times describes the changes as a “reshuffle kerfuffle” after a weekend of chaos in Labour ranks. 

The Spectator website says the drawn out process means that for many MPs, the reshuffle only served to show how Sir Keir’s authority has been weakened by the local election results and his actions in response to them.

The front pages of the Scottish papers are dominated by the aftermath of the SNP’s victory in the Holyrood elections. 

The National says the first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, laid down the law when she took a phone call from Boris Johnson. 

“FM tells Boris: we WILL have Indyref2” is the headline. 

The Daily Record says Ms Sturgeon fired a warning to the Tories that the referendum was “a matter of when… not if”, according to its headline. 

The Scotsman says the former prime minister, Gordon Brown, is to launch a campaign to save the Union. 

He wants to hold onto “middle Scotland” – people who do not want to be forced to make a choice between being Scottish or British – to counter Ms Sturgeon’s demand for a second independence referendum.

According to the Scottish edition of the Times, UK ministers are preparing to offer help to clear Scotland’s cancer backlog and invest billions of pounds in infrastructure projects as part of a renewed bid to save the union. 

The Mail in Scotland leads with the call by Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove for Ms Sturgeon to focus on economic recovery. 

Its headline is: “Now get on with the day job, Nicola.”

The Courier has a similar message for the first minister as it highlights what it calls the scourge of addiction. 

Below a picture of Ms Sturgeon walking into Bute House – her official residence – its headline urges: “Don’t turn your back on drug deaths, Nicola.”

Mr Johnson’s confirmation – expected later today – that the next stage of the government’s coronavirus road map for England will go ahead as planned next week, is the lead for many papers. 

The Daily Express says the prime minister is giving the green light to the return of much-missed freedoms such as meeting indoors – and even hugging. 

“A huge hug for Britain” is the Mail’s headline. 

The Daily Mirror says that after almost 14 months of being denied the most basic act of human affection, weary Brits will embrace the news we can start hugging again.

Finally, several papers warn that the great British cuppa is under threat from climate change. 

According to the Daily Telegraph, a report by Christian Aid says Kenya – the world’s biggest exporter of black tea – faces erratic rainfall, floods, droughts and rising temperatures. 

The weather is also changing in other tea-producing countries – including India, Sri Lanka and China – the paper adds. 

The Guardian says the effect of all this will alter the subtle flavours of the tea leaf and potentially reduce its health benefits. 

“Cuppa crisis brewing”, is the Daily Star’s headline.

#AceNewsDesk report ……….Published: May.10: 2021:

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